Orange and honey creme caramel

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Following yesterday’s tarte tatin I’m obviously still feeling a little upside down as I’ve made another recipe which requires inversion to serve.

This is from one of my favourite cookbooks – the ‘Bees Online’ honey recipe collection. It makes a classy dessert that we couldn’t quite live up to (it’s a Sunday, my yoga day when I do inversions of my own, and I was scarcely dressed by the time we sat down to eat), though we enjoyed it very much. The orange and the hazelnuts add bite and texture to what can otherwise be a cloying dish.

260g honey

1 tbsp water

4 eggs

550ml milk

finely grated rind of half an orange

pinch of cardamom

90g roasted peeled hazelnuts

extra honey to drizzle

Preheat oven to 170 degrees. Heat 170g honey with the water in a small heavy-bottomed saucepan. Stir as it comes to the boil, then reduce the heat to medium and continue to warm. As soon as the colour of the honey deepens, remove from the heat.

Allow the bubbles to subside then divide the mixture between the ramekins you’ll serve it in.

Gently warm the remaining honey and whisk in the eggs until just combined. Then whisk in the milk, orange rind and cardamom. Pour the mixture over the honey caramel.

Put the ramekins in a roasting pan and fill the pan with water until it comes halfway up the ramekins. Bake in this bain marie for about an hour until the custards are just set.

Remove from the bain marie and cool, then refrigerate for several hours before inverting on plates to serve. Top with hazelnuts drizzled with honey.

For more honey recipes, honey tasting notes, and stories behind extraordinary honeys, see my recently published Little Book of Honey.

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